Desire for the pleasures of the world was called by Buddha “the root of suffering”.
In my experience this is absolutely true. However, what is often missed is that desire has two sides to it: wanting and aversion. Aversion is the reverse of wanting, the “opposite side of the coin” we could say.
Just as wanting is the desire to have something, someone or some experience, aversion is the desire to not have or experience something, someone or some experience. And it is just as negatively impactful on our health, well-being and happiness as is wanting, if not more so.
We could say that wanting takes us toward some pleasure that we imagine will bring us happiness, and aversion moves us away from that which we perceive as unpleasant and undesirable.
Without deeper inspection it may seem logical at first that if wanting is the problem – the thoughts that bring us suffering, bondage and stress – so surely aversion, the opposite of wanting, must bring us the happiness, freedom and peace we all yearn for?
Reality, however, is very different.
Because it is nothing more than the reverse side of he coin of desire, aversion has a fundamentally similar energy to wanting. We feel this energy as a subtle, and sometimes not so subtle, contraction, usually in our abdomen and chest.
True freedom and happiness only emerges, can only emerge, when we choose to release the contraction.
DESIRE ⇒ WANTING/AVERSION ⇒ RELEASE = FREEDOM
Only when we realise that the reality of desire comprises wanting and aversion, and that these are but two sides of the same coin of identification with thought, can we break out of the bondage of mind and enjoy the blissful freedom of our natural identity as Divine Consciousness.
This immeasurably vast, timeless Consciousness is what all the great spiritual adepts through the ages have done their best to point us to.
Although ultimately silent and nameless, this great Being, whose nature is unconditional love, has been given many names over the centuries, including I AM, Nirvana, the Divine Person, Christ Consciousness, God, Krishna Consciousness, Allah, Brahma, et al.
When we release our wanting and our aversion a wonderful event happens … a feeling of relaxed and peaceful compassion for all life spontaneously emerges from behind the thought clouds that had been veiling the reality of our Divine nature from our awareness.